Digital Painting

Concept Art and Illustration > Digital Painting

    Teacher Information

    Charles Vinh is a master painter and illustrator who repeatedly wins high profile contracts with companies such as Visa, Canada Post, Bombardier, Sapporo, Chevrolet, Unibroue and many others. He has also illustrated several book covers, been selected to paint official portraits of dozens of NHL all-stars and has been a matte painter and art consultant for television and film. His paintings have won numerous prestigious awards and he is an amazing teacher with many years of experience.

    Diana Van Damme is a freelance illustrator best known for her fantasy illustrations. During her career, she has created artwork for various clients in the video game, comic book, tabletop and publishing industries such as Hex Entertainment and Aethera RPG. Diana’s artwork has also been featured in ImagineFX and Infected by Art.

    Course Outline

    Class meetings typically begin with a lecture and live demonstration of digital painting techniques in Photoshop. Students then complete digital painting exercises in Photoshop while receiving one-on-one feedback and coaching from the instructor.

    Week 1 – Learn an efficient method for painting in Photoshop. Understand how to work with values instead of lines, cut into shapes, and use gradient maps.

    Week 2 – Become proficient creating custom brushes and silhouette thumbnails.

    Week 3 – Learn to quickly create perspective grids and guides to compose your image in Photoshop. Gain essential digital painting tricks and shortcuts that will multiply your speed. Learn Scott Robertson's powerful “Halfway to Black” digital painting system.

    Week 4 – Become proficient speedpainting with shapes and creating composition thumbnails.

    Week 5 – Understand how to paint environments in Photoshop using the rules of perspective, contrast, depth, and scale.

    Week 6 – Environment painting and paint-over.

    Week 7 – Learn to work with basic shapes, photos and colour. Learn to do digital painting from life. Understand how to use textures and blending modes to add colour.

    Week 8 – Gain skill painting in colour.

    Week 9 – Learn how best to use the lasso, gradient, and smudging tools as well as blending modes, overlay textures, and image flipping to aid the painting process. Understand how to build contrast, haze, and atmosphere. Know when to use reflections, depth of field, focal points, hard and soft lines.

    Week 10 – Demonstrate everything you've learned and get personalized coaching to complete a final digital illustration you can use in your portfolio.


    Section A) starts Monday July 8th and is once a week from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM - English - Charles Vinh

    Section B) starts Sunday July 14th and is once a week from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM - English - Diana Van Damme

    Duration: 10 weeks

    Language: English (Charles Vinh is bilingual and can explain concepts and give feedback in both languages)

    You can register at the bottom-left of this page.


    Does your digital painting lack speed, realism, polish and a professional look? Do you wish you could create stunning digital paintings like today's top entertainment industry concept artists, illustrators and matte painters? In this class, you will learn the fundamentals of painting in Photoshop from a top industry artist who will also teach you some tips and tricks that even many advanced digital artists don't know!

    The beauty of digital painting is its greater speed, control, and ease of experimentation and this is why it is essential for today's industry artists. Through demonstration and one-on-one coaching, our instructor will teach you an efficient step-by-step method to realize your concepts in Photoshop. Emphasis is placed on composition, perspective, value, colour and lighting.

    You will learn fundamental painting techniques as well as the tricks of the trade and most useful tools in Photoshop.

    By the end of this class, you will have become proficient with a powerful method and set of tools for creating incredible digital artworks. From digital thumbnailing and rendering techniques to custom brushes and adjustment layers, you will have gained control over the most essential tools for today's industry artist. You will have a couple new pieces for your portfolio that you can be proud of and you will have the skills and knowledge to create beautiful and convincing digital paintings in Photoshop.

    *Laptop and tablet required


    This class is for people with some experience in realistic style drawing and painting and some basic skill in Photoshop who want to learn from a master digital painter and become good at digital painting.

    You should have completed at least some intermediate level drawing and basic painting courses (or have equivalent experience in realistic style drawing and painting: use of proper perspective, proportions, shading and colour). If you do not have the required skill in drawing and painting, it is suggested that you take our Foundations of Painting or Intro to Digital Painting class, and some intermediate level drawing classes such as Analytical Sketching.

    You also need to have a laptop with Photoshop installed and a tablet sensitive to pen pressure (such as a Wacom tablet). Or you need a tablet-computer with Photoshop installed that is sensitive to pen pressure (such as the Cintiq Companion). And you need to have some basic skills in Photoshop and be comfortable drawing and painting in Photoshop and know how to use layers and the basic tools (all things you can learn quickly with free tutorials online).

    Language requirements: You need at least intermediate level English to take this class (Dengyijia Liu is bilingual and can explain concepts and give feedback in both languages)


    This is one of our most popular classes and tends to fill up well before the deadline. $470  $430

    Late registration still available for this class if there is a "Register Now" button below.

    Choose your section


    • Learn to maximize your efficiency with a master of speedpainting
    • Master the 5 most useful tools in Photoshop
    • Understand how to avoid the 3 common mistakes that slow your progress and hinder your painting

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